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Hong Kong Leisure & Social

Hong Kong Nightlife

With plenty of bars, clubs, restaurants and late night shopping there is lots to do at night. Bars where you can have a beer and a glass of wine to exclusive cocktail lounges offering exotic mixtures with prices to match. These would be associated with Lan Kwai Fong and SOHO in Central. Hong Kong has a red light district in Wan Chai where you can buy an overpriced drink and some female company if that's your thing. But be careful you could end up with a serious bar bill if they get you inside one of the dance bars. Some of the bars have 'happy hours" that generally run from five to seven most days of the week. Just keep an eye on the time or it could get expensive. Guys, "Ladies Night" is the one to watch out for, ladies will get in for free and possibly get free "house" drinks. The guys will pay dearly for the privilege. Some bars pay a commission to the ladies on certain drinks, normally cocktails, it's all built into the price, so be careful. Ladies night is normally on a Wednesday or Thursday in Wan Chai and Lan Kwai Fong in Central.

Eating out, there is a huge range to choose from noodle bars offering basic local food to high end restaurants offering international cuisine, priced accordingly. If you get the chance have "Yum Cha" (Drink Tea) despite being provided by the gallon is not what it's really about. Trolleys stacked high with small bamboo baskets packed with all manner of Chinese goodies, great experience. Alternatively go to one of the many "Tea Houses", very simple inside, high turnover of people, very busy, some don't close. Great choice of good food, very reasonably priced. I highly recommend the Singapore Noodles, with a side order of the Malaysian curry sauce. But as with "Yum Cha" take a local with you, English isn't widely spoken.

Great cinema's offering a range of both Chinese and western films, the schedule changes every Thursday, but make sure you get the right version. Big seats with lots of leg room, my only criticism is that the air-conditioning is always too cold wherever you go, so take a jacket or a sweater with you.

As for shopping, most places are open till around 10.00 pm at night. The Plazas in Central and Admiralty cater for the high end and designer market, main street for main stream shopping, to the markets for the price, a bit of fun and not so quality conscious. If you want to get something made go to Tsuim Sha Tsui (take the Star Ferry). You won't need to ask, you will be approached by numerous Asian businessmen offering their tailoring services or a copy Rolex!

For those of us who smoke. Hong Kong has been introducing more stringent controls with more legistlation on the way on where you can and can't smoke. Smoking in bars and restaurants is prohibited and carries a fixed penalty fine. Care must also be taken when smoking outside in public places such as parks. Also public transport areas like taxi ranks, bus and tram stops, smoking is also not allowed. Look out for any signs, or if in doubt ask or if you're still not sure, don't have a smoke, it could cost you $1,500HKD.

Like most big cities Hong Kong doesn't sleep just slows down a bit at night in certain areas.


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